Written by another one of Kenosha's conservative teachers.
Thanks Tom, you did a great job. Very well thought out and very well written!
It was revealing to read Marvin Martin’s recent letter blaming everything on Bush. In foreign policy, when one blames the President, one blames the nation he represents. Marvin’s premise, “Bombs can’t kill an ideology,” is essentially true. However, he uses that premise to imply that military action by the United States is unwise, that the US action in Iraq has caused all the present-day violence. The rise of Muslim extremism and tensions in the Middle East didn’t emerge with the election of Bush.
That the US should withdraw from military action in the war on terrorism reflects the same mentality that would have left Hitler unchecked in Europe. Our “bombs” in WWII may not have destroyed Nazism, but they saved the world from those who would impose it. In the words of Edmund Burke, “All that is necessary for evil to triumph is that good men do nothing.”
One must confront the evil of terrorism on two fronts—first, for the short term, with military, diplomatic, intelligence-gathering, economic, and humanitarian efforts. But there is a second thrust which Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice addresses: “We must do more than just capture or kill individual terrorists, and we’re doing that. We’re striking at the very source of terror itself by summoning a vision of hope that outshines any ideology of hatred. The United States is supporting the democratic aspirations of all people.” This effort to transform the Middle East is the long-term goal and is difficult. Yet it’s necessary precisely because it’s the only way to defeat the ideology of hatred and violence.
The insurgency in Iraq should increase our resolve. Tony Blair delivered a brilliant speech to this point. “The question is not whether the fight for democracy in Iraq is worth it. The question is why is it so important to the forces of reaction and violence to halt Iraq in its democratic tracks? The answer is that the reactionary elements know the importance of victory or defeat in Iraq.” Our cause is noble--helping people in pursuit of liberty--and self-serving, for in their freedom lies our security.